HICKORY – Lenoir-Rhyne University’s home win streak reached nine on Saturday as the Bears opened conference play with a 34-17 victory over Newberry.
LRU (3-0, 1-0 South Atlantic Conference) won the Bishops’ Trophy with quarterback Grayson Willingham going 15 of 20 for 176 yards and a touchdown. That moved him to third all-time for passing TDs with the Bears (32).
LRU next plays on Saturday at 1 p.m. in an SAC game at Mars Hill.
On Saturday, the Bears had the ball for 17 minutes more than the Wolves, grinding out 363 rushing yards on 64 carries.
Running back Jace Jordan, making his LRU debut, had five carries – all in the first half – and gained 96 yards and also caught a pass for 18 yards.
Willingham also connected with Demarius Hampton for a career-best seven catches for 65 yards.
LRU went in front 24-10 by driving 66 yards on 14 plays for a 9-yard TD run by Ameen Stevens.
Former Fred T. Foard High star Tate Beaver scored his first college TD on a 65-yard run while Jaquay Mitchell added 75 yards on 10 carries.
Sherrod Williams’ six tackles and three quarterback hurries led the Bears on defense and Dan Louba had 1 ½ sacks and blocked a field goal.
LRU has played Newberry in the Battle for the Bishops Trophy since 1987 and now leads the series 18-15.